I still hear her sticky voice in the tree near my bedroom window. Words tangling in the limbs and twigs, the leaves twitch. Mum is a breeze of complaints, “That girl couldn’t find her way out of a dead end.” And the neighbour nods, adding it isn’t easy being 15. I hate being 15. It’s a nowhere-nothing age. Their conversation clouds my head, but it’s a butter-white dogwood blossom that holds my stare, its centre is the only sex education I know, exposed anatomy, filaments and antlers, and I recall Mum saying a dogwood blossom has a religious connotation, but she can’t remember what, and then I hear her say “it’s a shame you can’t choose your relatives,” and I stare at that dogwood flower, knowing my world just changed. But I know now, you will love again the stranger who was your self.
written for dVerse Prosery #3
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